Clubs and Organizations
August 19, 2019From: National Constitution Center
Philadelphia, PA (August, 2019) – On August 18, America celebrates the 99th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which guaranteed the right of women to vote. In advance of this anniversary, the National Constitution Center announced it will open a new 19th Amendment exhibit in the summer of 2020 in celebration of the centennial.
“The ratification of the 19th Amendment extended the Constitution’s promise of equal citizenship to women, underscoring the core values of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution,” said National Constitution Center President and CEO Jeffrey Rosen. “On the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, the National Constitution Center is thrilled to open a new exhibit to inspire and educate visitors of all ages about the visionary leaders who worked to secure this landmark amendment and about the constitutional path to voting rights for women.”
Tracing the triumphs and struggles that led to the ratification of the 19th Amendment, the new exhibit will explore the long fight for women’s suffrage, beginning before the Civil War. It will highlight the constitutional arguments and historical context of the movement, as well as spotlight the key advocates for women’s rights and the methods they used to persuade the states and then the nation to recognize equal citizenship for women. Beginning in the early- to mid-1800s, the exhibit will capture the early efforts to secure rights for women and follow the story into the Reconstruction era when the movement grew—and split over women’s rights versus rights for newly freed African Americans. The story will continue with state-level campaigns for suffrage and the push for a national amendment, and will culminate with the ratification of the 19th Amendment, its impact, and the ongoing push for equal rights that followed ratification in 1920.
The 19th Amendment exhibit will build upon the National Constitution Center’s newest permanent exhibit, Civil War and Reconstruction: The Battle for Freedom and Equality, which is America’s first exhibit devoted to the constitutional legacy of the Civil War and Reconstruction. The new exhibit, located adjacent to the Civil War and Reconstruction gallery, will explore how the women’s rights movement grew alongside the anti-slavery movement and ultimately gained momentum during Reconstruction as part of the ongoing battle for freedom and equality for all.
The exhibit will be open for the centennial year and beyond. The National Constitution Center is a proud partner of Vision2020’s Women 100, a celebration of American women in the year 2020, in honor of the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment.